Wednesday, May 16, 2018

hobbies my father taught me

hello there

for some time i have, look you see, thought that i should really do a follow up piece to this one, in which i explored a popular card game what i learned off my Mum, to be sure. to give some sort of fairness or balance, it strikes me as being so that i should have a gander here at something what i learned off of my Dad.

events have conspired, as in retrospect they always seem to do, to make today the day that is as good as any to do exactly or entirely that.

yes. with another edition of the FIFA World Cup looming, it is time for a sticker book album and countless stickers to go in it. although, in the latter respect, maybe not so much.

where this is a hobby my Dad taught me is relatively straightforward. he is, or maybe was for i am unsure if he remains so, quite fanatical about getting these albums and completing them. always was, apparently. Gran kindly gave me this album, as it came free with a newspaper and she had no use for it. when she handed it over to me, she recalled with some fondness my Dad's habit of collecting stickers, cigarette cards and so forth throughout his youth. and into adulthood.

i had done sticker books before my Dad introduced the path of doing football ones. from my own youth i can recall, with some fondness, doing ones for both ET and Return Of The Jedi; two films ostensibly aimed at the whole family from the early 80s. perhaps you have heard of them in passing, or maybe not. to various degrees, and as an aside, both have merit and are worth watching.

that there above is/are some initial stickers what came free with the album. alas, no, no Panama team stickers, and no sign of Messi or anyone like that. still, quite a nice gesture, made all the nicer as you will find when we get to the part where i moan about the cost of stickers for this album.

anyway, around the time of them sticker books what i spoke, i think my Dad clocked that he could rejuvenate his own interest in such and have a hobby with me by introducing me to the joys of the English & Scottish football sticker album collection thing. i am not sure when, but this will have been either the 83/84 season or maybe the 84/85 one.

as far as i can tell they don't do that "mega" album any more. but once, they did. you got, i think, all four top divisions in England (back then it was Division One down to Division Four; far easier than the current names) and then i think the three main divisions in Scotland. football divisions; obviously "Scottish divisions" as a general thing has a good deal more than three. but, anyway.

indeed, that is the England page or pages for Russia 2018. whereas i have two stickers in it now, don't recall who, this is blank. England were of course widely expected to host the 2018 edition of the World Cup, but [text removed due to FIFA having a love of lawyers], so Russia it is. and why not.

this would be the best England team to feature in a sticker book for many years - perhaps 18, as point of fact. why? well, no Wayne Rooney. although i am not sure why they call him that, going on what the fans and all those who are aware of things like [text removed due to legal advice] shout at him, you would be forgiven for thinking his name is actually Wayne Carr or Wayne Kerr, depending on your provincial accent. anyway, i do not have to see him, and that is a good thing.

no, i am not sure why they don't do the football stickers every season for the divisions in England and Scotland any more. should i be called on to guess, i would say in these hedonistic "Premier League" days, royalties and "image rights" payments to some players would make it too expensive. also, with the kids having so much to spend their money on these days, maybe there is just no demand.

speaking of demand and cost, i was horrified when i went off to purchase some stickers for this album. i had, reasonably, expected a price of 50p per packet. no, it turned out to be 80p a packet. and for that you only got 5 (five) stickers in the packet, making a cost of 16p per sticker. interestingly if you write off to Panini and purchase any numbers you are missing, they charge you 22p per sticker.

whereas i thought i might buy 5 packets for 30 stickers for £2.50, i instead ended up spending £3.20 for 4 packets and got 20 stickers out of the deal. and none of them were, quite frankly, all that interesting. well, maybe one.

is my Dad having a similar torment with all of this? not sure. the last time i was with him and World Cup stickers were on the go it was the 2010 edition, the one celebrated with the vuvuzelas. he and Richard lost the plot somewhat with the stickers for that, buying many hundreds of packets and ending up with thousands of duplicates. this i know, as for some reason i ended up with all the duplicates. i think i still have them here somewhere, in a box.

that's five stickers for 80p on display, then. no, i am not all that sure who all of them players are, or indeed if any of them have any chance of glory.

one thing perhaps lost with no mega massive sticker book each season is an unsolicited knowledge of teams from far away. mindful of the fact, of course, that there was no internet thing back then. to this day i still have a thing for one Scottish team, Morton. i attribute this purely to the fact that, whenever that album came out was that me and Dad done, i did seem to get a disproportionately high number of stickers for Morton, be it the team or individual players.

as for the actual World Cup, will i be shouting on England? well, yes, no, maybe, perhaps, kind of. it would be nice if we could give a decent account of ourselves in the tournament and not leave it in disgrace, really, and that's all. i don't have any expectations or hopes of us winning; i suspect few do. we have some decent players and that, as well as a respected gentleman for a manager, but there's a hefty list of national teams which easily outclass us out there on the pitch.

Panama would be my team of choice, really. it's their first World Cup, i think, so i hope they enjoy. and yes, my enthusiasm for them is purely down to the song Panama off of Van Halen, or at least Van Halen when they were decent due to David Lee Roth being in the band.

what i particularly like about the above page for Panama in the World Cup 2018 sticker album is that it lists the spelling of Panama in various different languages. nearly all of them spell it, oddly, "Panama". which means the above looks like it is just the lyrics for the song Panama.

indeed, yes, it would be awesome if Panama won the World Cup, and to celebrate David Lee Roth was respectfully invited to come along and sing Panama to a worldwide, if not global, audience. one really suspects that Brazil, Spain, Germany, Argentina, etc might get in the way of this dream. but man, what a beautiful dream.

above is the one and only "shiny" i got, the emblem or logo for the Costa Rica team on a partially silver background. the player stickers are dull and bland, and the shiny stickers just are not as shiny as they once were. perhaps they now use eco friendly materials to print them on, or cheaper ones. what they charge more for to sell.

the astronomical costs involved in attempting to complete a 2018 World Cup sticker album have been covered on other corners of the internet. whilst i don't remember exactly, i think someone calculated that you would have to spend somewhere north of £500 or £700 on stickers to do it. that is, if you did it the fair and square way, which would of course be curious, since [text removed on legal advice] awarded to Russia.

i am sure, however, that if you and your mates did "swapsies" with doubles then you could get it done cheaper. perhaps you would only need to spend just north of £375 to fill the album.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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